Many people think that adults are not supposed to have nightmares, but that’s not true. Just because you’ve grown up doesn’t mean you’re immune to nightmares or even night terrors. Some people are prone to having nightmares, while others do not remember their dreams at all when they wake up. Regardless of where you fall on the dream spectrum, there are lots of us who want to have good dreams and be able to remember them. Others who are more advanced with their dream habits can actually control their dreams and realize that they are dreaming. These lucid dreamers can turn a nightmare into a journey or adventure, make themselves fly, turn invisible, or visualize a goal coming true. If you’re someone who constantly has nightmares or simply want to have better dreams, this guide is for you.
Watch What You’re Eating Before Bed
As always, avoid caffeine, alcohol, and nicotine before going to bed. And if you’re particularly sensitive to either of these substances, it’s best to stay away from them after 3 PM, as its effects could persist well into the night. Scientists have hotly debated whether certain foods are responsible for certain dreams. Cheese and other dairy products are believed to give people uncomfortable and weird dreams, however, dairy products also have a long history of gastrointestinal discomfort. So the peculiar dream you had last night might have been in response to a buildup of flatulence while you were asleep. Foods that are protein rich, like cheese, nuts, fish, and lean meats are good for making yourself drowsy. But beware — too much heavy and rich foods could spell disaster. Heartburn and stomach pains do not make good dreams.
Don’t Scare Yourself Before Bed
Horror films, creepypastas, ghosts, or a creepy video game can be enough to ruin your good dreams. After all, if you’re feeling fearful and afraid while you’re awake, there’s a good chance that such feelings will transfer over to your dreams. So stay away from that late night scary movie and put that horror book down.
Right before bed you should be doing things that will relax you. It could be meditation, reading a low-key book, or even doing some nighttime stretches. Some people even think about their happy place, which is a mental picture of somewhere that makes the person feel relaxed and happy.
Keep a Dreams Journal
Get a notebook and write down what you remember about your dreams. Do this as soon as you wake up, as you might forget these dreams later in the day. After a week or two of doing this, go through your journal again. You’ll be able to identify various themes, fears, goals, and patterns that will help you change your dreams. This is one of the first few steps to becoming a lucid dreamer, as a dream journal helps you remember when you’re dreaming.
Is Your Bed and Environment Comfy?
We can change our habits and our thinking patterns, but sometimes bad dreams happen because you’re sleeping on a horrible bed. If you are waking up with aches and pains, or the agony persists throughout the day, then it’s time to invest in a new bed. Organic mattresses are a great pick because they’re chemical free, flame retardant, eco-friendly, cost relatively the same as other mattresses, and can last just as long.
Also, make sure that your sleeping environment doesn’t have distractions. White noise can help a lot of people go to sleep, but if there’s street noises and people talking, you’ll more than likely not be able to sleep. Keep the area cool, and wear loose fitting clothing.